Finland’s trade deficit tripled from last year
Finnish exports to EU countries declined in January-February
Finland’s exports have stagnated, and sales to European Union countries are declining. Meanwhile, imports are growing; consequently the country’s balance of trade shows an increasing deficit.
In February, Finland’s balance of trade deficit was EUR 613 million, up from EUR 203 million in the corresponding period last year.
According to the most recent foreign trade statistics released by the National Board of Customs, Finland’s exports in February were at the same level as a year ago, reaching slightly less than EUR 4.4 billion.
Exports to the EU countries declined in January-February by three per cent, and particularly trade with Germany shrank.
Finland’s trade with countries outside the Union seems to be brisk, as the growth rate was three per cent in January-February.
Of the large trading partners, Russia and China managed to increase their share in both exports and imports.
Imports increased by as much as nine per cent amounting to EUR 5 billion.
The cornerstone of exports was the chemical industry. According to data released by the National Board of Customs, the chemical industry exports were nine per cent higher in February than they were a year earlier. The growth was largely attributable to the increase in the price of crude oil, which is why the value of the exports of oil products grew by one-fourth.
Moreover, the export volumes of the mechanical forest industry also increased, and the export of communications equipment showed a distinct upward trend.
Exports of basic metals, machinery, transport equipment, and paper remained lower than a year earlier. However, the value of copper exports clearly increased.
When it comes to the value of imports, the volumes in all of the key product groups grew from the previous year, excluding machinery, basic metals, and certain electrical equipment.
The export and import volumes began to shrink in December, and in January the decline accelerated. The volume of exports remained four per cent and that of imports more than nine per cent smaller than in December.
Finnish foreign trade prices remained almost the same as in the previous year. Export prices grew by 0.6 per cent, while import prices remained unchanged from December.
Previously in HS International Edition:
Weaker euro benefits Finnish exports, as big trade deficit is announced for 2011 (7.2.2012)
Finland’s import figures back up to the level reached before recession (10.5.2011)
Finnish exports rose 25% year-on-year in November (1.2.2011)
National Board of Customs